Hell of an answer

la gran siete

Distinguished Member
The following is an actual question given on a University of Liverpool
chemistry final exam.

The answer by one student was so "profound" that the professor shared it
with colleagues via the Internet, which is why we now have the pleasure of
enjoying it as well.

Question: Is Hell exothermic (gives off heat) or endothermic (absorbs heat)?

Most of the students wrote proofs of their beliefs using Boyle's Law that
gas cools when it expands and heats when it is compressed or some variant.

One student, however, wrote the following:

First, we need to know how the mass of Hell is changing in time. So we need
to know the rate at which souls are moving into Hell and the rate at which
they are leaving. I think that we can safely assume that once a soul gets to
Hell, it will not leave. Therefore, no souls are leaving.

As for how many souls are entering Hell, let's look at the different
religions that exist in the world today. Most of these religions state that,
if you are not a member of their religion, you will go to Hell. Since there
is more than one of these religions and since people do not belong to more
than one religion, we can project that all souls go to Hell. With birth and
death rates as they are, we can expect the number of souls in Hell to
increase exponentially. Now, we look at the rate of change of the volume in
Hell. Because Boyle's Law states that in order for the temperature and
pressure in Hell to stay constant, the volume of Hell must expand
proportionately as souls are added. This gives two possibilities:

1. If Hell is expanding at a slower rate than the rate at which souls enter
Hell, then the temperature and pressure in Hell will increase until all Hell
breaks loose.

2. If Hell is expanding at a rate faster than the increase of souls in Hell,
then the temperature and pressure will drop until Hell freezes over.

So which is it? If we accept the postulate given to me by Sandra during my
freshman year, that "it will be a cold day in Hell before I sleep with you,"
and take into account the fact that I slept with her last night, then number
2 must be true, and thus I am sure that Hell is endothermic and has already
frozen over. The corollary of this theory is that since Hell has frozen
over, it follows that it is not accepting any more souls and is extinct ...
leaving only Heaven, thereby proving the existence of a divine being - which
explains why, last night, Sandra kept shouting "Oh my God."


Member 55145

Distinguished Member
yea think it was oxford when i read it. oh well nice to read it again! :thumbsup:


Active Member
Yup, ok I'll bite... :D

Seen it several times, it's an old story that been in circulation for a while and probably has loads of variations.

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